Hu Youping, the Chinese woman who died attempting to shield a Japanese mother and son during a knife attack last week, has been posthumously honored with a “righteous and courageous role model” certificate by the city of Suzhou where she resided. A memorial ceremony took place on Tuesday, during which officials from the Jiangsu Province city commended Hu’s bravery. The city is also planning to establish a “Youping Righteousness Fund” to promote the spirit of righteousness. Hu’s family thanked the public for the kind messages that have poured in since her death, but have declined donation offers.

Hu Youping Dies After Saving Japanese Mother and Son

Hu was working as a school bus attendant when the incident took place last Monday at around 4 p.m. According to a statement by the Suzhou police, she saw a man with a knife attacking a young boy and woman at a bus stop and “immediately rushed to stop him. She was then stabbed several times. The perpetrator, a 52-year-old unemployed man whose family name is Zhou, was arrested at the scene. The Japanese mother and son were hurt, but their injuries were not life-threatening. Sadly, Hu succumbed to her injuries two days after the attack.

Born in the Jiangsu city of Huaian, Hu moved to Suzhou at the age of 20. She worked at a textile factory, before getting married and having a son. In 2020, she opened a store selling cosmetic items but soon had to close it due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In her honor, the Japanese embassy in China lowered its flag to half-mast after the attack. “We believe [Hu’s] courage and kindness also represent that of the Chinese people. We pay tribute to her righteous deeds. May she rest in peace,” read a statement from the embassy. 

Chinese Internet Companies Vow To Clamp Down on Online Hate Speech

While Hu’s bravery has been widely praised on Chinese social media, there have, unfortunately, also been several resentful remarks. Weibo, arguably China’s most influential social media platform, said that after the knife attack some users had “published extreme remarks that incited nationalist sentiment, promoted group hatred and even cheered for criminal behaviour in the name of patriotism.” It has removed 759 pieces of illegal content. The internet services giant, Tencent, meanwhile, said it had dealt with 836 posts that violated its rules. Both platforms have blocked several accounts. The short video app, Douyin, said it is investigating “extreme xenophobia” that appeared on certain accounts. 

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